A Thousand Paper Cranes

I am the voice of Dragons past

I've seen some pretty good compilations and one-shots that've made me smile and/or cry (yes, I'll admit it), so I've decided to take a whack at it. they'll be all over the place, so I'll tell you which Phase it is at the beginning of the chapter

the title of the story is from the Sarah McLachlan song. ya know, that one they play with the ASPCA commercials? makes me cry...*sniff* T-T

Phase 1

I don't own Gorillaz


The worst catastrophe had befallen our favorite band members. A lazy Sunday was drifting by with agonizingly slow speed. A day of rest for everyone, or just any other day for some certain people, and the could find it in themselves to easily enjoy it. But, sadly, this was not the case for Gorillaz. There was nothing good on the telly, no one wanted to play music, the video games were all beaten, and whoever heard of them reading? Nope, this calamity was rampant through Kong Studios and there was no denying it.

The Gorillaz were bored.

"Play?" Noodle tugged at the hem of Russel's shirt. "Play with Noodle?"

"Huh-what? Oh, sorry baby-girl, I can't right now, gotta lot o' work to do." He wasn't sure of what work, but he didn't feel like playing games right now. "Go look fer 'D, I'm sure he'll play with ya."

Disappointed that the man wouldn't play, she still nodded and set off to track down the singer. Maybe they could play outside? Not in the landfill of course, but at a nearby park. She liked the park. She quickly grabbed a board game from her room and ran to the lift, carrying it above her head. The lift played the music she found oddly addicting as she rode down to the first floor. She skipped down the corridor and walked through the door to the car park.

Murdoc's Winnebago was moving. Not like he had someone over, but a movement like he was walking up and down the aisle repeatedly. Noodle tip-toed past as quietly as possible and descended into 2D's room. Though it was never truly the cleanest, now it was almost awe-inspiring. Hundreds of little square papers were posted all over the walls, floor, and furniture, each messed with an untidy scrawl. The singer was on his bed, a stack of papers on the side, and a chewed up pencil in his hand. How he chewed it up without front teeth was a mystery, but he managed.

"Toochie? Toochie play?" she asked. Even though he was facing her and didn't have headphones on, he failed to notice her presence. He mumbled to himself and scribbled on the paper in his hand. Now a little irritated, the girl stomped her feet and said with more tone, "Toochie!"

"Wot? !" his head jerked up. "Oh, ih's jus' yew Noods. Wot'cha doin'?"

She waved the board game. "Play?"

"Oh...sorry Noods," he shook his head, "I can'. Te music's flowin' in me. I'm in te mode. I need ta concentrate on te lyrics an' notes."

Noodle huffed and picked her way among the papers laid out on the floor. She jumped up onto 2D's bed, disturbing some of the notes. She heard a crackling noise beneath her bottom and pulled out a crumpled note. He didn't seem to notice. Sighing in boredom, she started folding the paper into the only origami piece she had memorized. After completing her crane, she zoomed it around like an airplane. She shook 2D's shoulder, but he didn't respond. She scowled and pulled his hair to get his attention.

"Ow! Stop ih, Noods!" he slapped her hand away. Not even fazed by his tone, she shoved the paper bird under his nose. "I'm busy!" he pushed it away. Now annoyed, she jumped down from the bed, landing on some notes. "Noodle!" he rose to his feet, picked her up, and carried her across the room to the door. She scowled and sat in the door frame, determined not to be driven off. 2D returned to his bed.

The guitarist began pulling faces at her friend. He still didn't look up at her. She hooked her fingers in the corners of her lips and stuck out her tongue. At that moment, something flew past her head. She turned to investigate what was a piece of wrapped candy. She glanced at 2D, but he hadn't moved. She looked back at the candy, which was suddenly joined with another. 2D still hadn't moved, so she got up and looked closer at the treats. Another piece flew partway of the staircase. She ascended the steps to pick up the candy, only to turn around and be greeted with a small pile of candy and a shut door.

"Torikkusuta!" she yelled, giving the door a good kick. (Translation: Trickster!) Now she was alone and the candy didn't heal the hurt she was feeling. She climbed the steps and faced the Winnebago. Dare she? The guitarist halted at the door and tentatively knocked on it.

"Wot the 'ell?" She immediately regretted her decision and stepped back just in time for the door to swing open and miss her by an inch. "Wot do'ya wont Noodle?"

"Play?"

"Play? I ain' got no time fer playin'! The stupid tour manager is gonna 'ave 'is 'ead shoved up 'is ass when I'm done with 'im! Too much work ta be done."

"If not much work, then play?"

He exhaled loudly and leaned on the door frame. "Sure love, if meh workload magically cuts down, I'll play." The girl smiled and ran off into the car park. "The only reason I'm doin' this work is 'cause I ain' got nothin' else ta do," he muttered to himself.

Noodle came to a halt. Now all she had to do was think of a way to lighten Murdoc's workload. She sighed sadly when she realized that would probably be impossible. She had never seen what he does exactly, but he complained about it enough for her to doubt that it was an easy feat. It would take a miracle. She heard a cracking noise and looked at her hand, realizing she'd been squeezing her paper crane. She fixed it back into place, a small smile growing. It would take a miracle and she had one.

Only nine hundred and ninety-nine more to go.


2D yawned widely and rubbed his eye-dents. He had felt a killer headache coming on earlier and had popped some of his pills. His pencil was stuck to his face and he looked as though he'd rolled around in his notes. He started picking the papers off, not aware that something had dramatically changed. Once they were in a half-neat pile, he looked around the room for the first time.

Ih lewks different.

He looked at the floor, realizing he was able to see it, same with the walls. The room was clean. He stood up, the dazed mist produced by his pills fading away. His notes were gone. All of the ones he'd had plastered to the walls, floor, and furniture. All the ones he'd written on. He checked the ones he'd pulled off of himself, seeing that they were blank.

Where'are meh notes? ! I 'ave'ta find 'em!

He started toward the door, but halted when he saw it was open. Someone had been down here and there was a good chance they had taken his masterpieces with them.

Bastards! He shot up the steps only to be greeted by a few lost papers in the car park...with candy wrappers! Noodle! Tha' li'le sneak took meh notes! He tore through the halls and up the lift. If she's done anyfin' ta 'em, I'll...I'll...He slammed open her door, frightening the poor girl out of her wits. "Noodle! Gimme back meh..." he looked around the room.

There were hundreds of paper cranes set about the furniture, all turned to make it look as though they were staring at him. Each was carefully folded from a single sheet of his notes. His scribbles were evident on the wings. Noodle held a half-finished one in her hand.

"Wot did yew do?" he asked, dumbstruck.

"Origami!" she replied cheerfully. "Give Murdoc-san wish."

"Give Muhdoc a wish?"

"Hai! Then play."

"Yew took meh notes...an' made 'em inta paper cranes." He picked one up and started to unfold it.

"No!" Noodle rushed at him and clung to his arm. "No! Need it! Okimasu!" (Translation: Put it down) When he refused to obey her order, she stepped back and inhaled deeply. There was only one way to end this. She let out a piercing scream, causing 2D to drop the crane and stare at her in shock. Almost immediately, they heard the sound of thundering footsteps.

"What's goin' on? !" Russel shouted once he was through the door.

Both 2D and Noodle pointed an accusing finger at one another, but the singer spoke first. "Noodle stole meh notes an' made 'em inta birds!" The young girl began jabbering away in her native tongue, something possibly along the lines of explaining this whole mess, but Russel wasn't quite sure. His grasp on the language wasn't the best. 2D picked up a handful of cranes, only to be interrupted by a swift kick to the shin. "Dammit Noodle!"

"Hey! Calm down!" said Russel. "I'll sort this out. Alright baby-girl," he knelt down to her level, "what's this about?"

"Nobody play with Noodle, but Murdoc-san say maybe," she explained. "Too much work, can't play. Take notes and make origami! Get wish, then Murdoc-san play!"

He got a thoughtful look on his face. "A thousand paper cranes?"

"Wot's ih mean, Russel?" asked 2D.

"Noodle's reenactin' an old legend from Japan. Legend has it, if ya fold a thousand origami cranes, a crane will grant you a wish. She wanted to fold the cranes an' wish Muds' work was done so he could play with her." He placed a hand on the girl's head and ruffled the helmet back and forth. "Poor baby-girl was so desperate for someone to play with, she was gonna give Murdoc a wish. He could have anythin'."

"Give me te wish," 2D insisted. "I cewd get meh face fixed."

"Like your face," Noodle mumbled. "Just wanted play."

2D hung his head. "I guess we kinda 'ave been neglectin' ya, love. 'M sorry."

She hugged his legs, as far up she could reach. "Noodle sorry."

"How far did ya get?" Russel asked, holding up one of the cranes.

Noodle counted on her fingers, her sharp eyes glancing at organized piles around the room. "Ten more...hai, ten."

"Yew made nine-'undred an' ninety cranes while I wos sleepin'?" said 2D in awe. "Tha's impressive."

"I'll tell ya what," Russel picked up a few sheets of the notes, "we'll help ya finish, then go tell Murdoc, deal? Then we'll get dinner."

"Hai!" the girl grinned.

"But I wont te wish," 2D whined.


For the second time that day, Noodle rapped her knuckles on the Winnebago door. But she wasn't terrified this time. 2D and Russel stood behind her. They all heard cussing, then the door swung open, revealing Murdoc, still pissed as ever.

"Wot? !" he demanded.

Noodle proudly held up the thousandth crane for him to see. "You get wish! Come and play!"

He stared at the scribbled-on bird before looking up to the other bandmates. "Wot's she goin' on about?"

"Noodle stole 'D's notes an' folded a thousand paper cranes," Russel explained. "It's an old Japanese legend. She did it so you would play with her. With that crane," he pointed at it in the girl's hands, "you get a wish."

"I get a wish, huh?" He picked up the bird and studied it closely.

"Noodle wos 'opin' ih wewd be ta cut down on yer work an' play wiff 'er," said 2D.

"Cute kid," the bassist patted her helmet, "but yew give ole Mudsy a wish an' ih definitely ain' gonna be tha'." Noodle looked down at the ground, crestfallen. She'd only understood a part of that sentence, but she realized that Murdoc wasn't going to play with her after all. " 'Ang on, love," he continued after seeing her face, "this is still a pre'y cool thing. An' ih gave ya somethin' ta do the whole day." He retreated a few steps back and set the crane on the dashboard. "I'm fuckin' starvin', let's get somethin' ta eat."

"Soup's on!" 2D picked up Noodle and spun her around, causing her to squeal in delight. He ran off toward the lift, Russel following at a brisk pace, making sure the singer didn't accidently drop the child. Murdoc followed at a slow saunter, his hands in his pockets.

Cute kid. I wish yew'd never grow up. He paused in shock and looked up to the ceiling. "Tha's doesn' count!" he whispered fiercely to no one in particular.


is it any good? i thought it was a cute idea. The crane is the only origami piece I have completely memorized. I was so bored one time, I made one out of tissue paper. Needless to say, people were impressed.